Bath Christmas Market – Our guide to the Bath Christmas Market

Bath Christmas Market Guide
Bath Christmas Market
Bath Christmas Market Guide

Our guide to the Bath Christmas Market

Bath Christmas Market is a truly magical event. This special, award-winning market is staying in the city for a whopping 18 days this year (2019), giving its guests tonnes of time to shop around and experience that holiday feeling.

There are going to be over 150 chalets spread across Bath’s Georgian-style streets; a far cry from many, more cramped Christmas Markets that take place in town and city squares.

What is West Country Games?

West Country Games Home Page Logo

West Country Games embraces all the stereotypes of the West Country in one great day out, comprising of 9 totally hilarious games suitable for all sorts of groups.

If you have an upcoming, Stag do, Hen Weekend, Birthday Party or Team Building Day, then why not give us a try?

Sparkling gift options...

The city of Bath knows how to treat its visitors and its residents. Giving them an array of sparkling gift options; from candles and crystals to homeware and house decorations. All ages will find something to love about this mystical market event, no matter how long they spent there. Tour the stalls during the day for some light shopping but remember to return during the darker hours to see the lights twinkling up close.

There are plenty of hot drinks stands selling delicious treats to warm you right up while you hop from stall to stall.

For those local to the market’s area, pop out during your lunch break and sneakily pick something up for someone you love.

No matter what brings you to Bath this winter, find a new reason to keep coming back each year with the Bath Christmas Market.

Bath Christmas Market Food Highlights

Bath Christmas Market Dates 2019

This year’s Bath Christmas Market takes place over the days between November 28th and December 15th. While the market is certainly the main attraction, the city of Bath has never done anything halfway – so there’s plenty more to see and do in and around the market area.

As for opening times, just so you don’t show up when things are closed and end up waiting around in the cold, check out this quick list:

Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays: 10am to 7pm
Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays: 10am to 8pm
Sundays: 10am to 6pm

As you can see, that’s between eight and ten available shopping hours every day in the lead up to Christmas! With over two weeks of daily holiday shopping right at the heart of Bath.

Hen Do Bath Christmas Market

The highlights of Bath Christmas Market

One highlight of this picturesque market is Paperstarlights, who have been making paper star lanterns for over 20 years. This Christmas Market chalet can help you bring the magic of winter right into your home; without bringing the cold in, as well. Each lantern is handcrafted using traditional techniques and the materials are responsibly sourced. They use natural dyes, too.

No Bath Christmas Market is complete without sweet-smelling food stalls. So, next, let us introduce you to The Creative Crepe Co. Sweet or savoury, there’s a huge range of choices of fillings and toppings for your crepes. They’re happy for you to get creative with it, and the owners are very friendly. If you’re not here for the crepes, why not grab one of their hot chocolates, instead?

And lastly, for the vegans among our readers: The Vegan Spice. 100% of their menu is vegan-friendly, including a mouth-watering katsu curry that has a Thai flair.

Bath Christmas Market Activities

Base your hen do around a visit to the Christmas Markets

How can you make a hen do around a Christmas Market, you ask? Well, let us tell you all about the amazing Bath Christmas Market Experience. Start your holiday season off right with a trip to Thermae Bath Spa, a two-course Champagne lunch at The Ivy Bath Brasserie, and a wreath-making workshop with a fantastic package available from the Visit Bath company.

Available for just ten days in December and only during the weekdays of the first two weeks that month. It’s the perfect day-filling set of activities, and you’ll still have time to head over to the Christmas Market chalets after your wreath-making class is over.

Just £112 a person for all your gal pals to share a fantastic day with you.

Alternatively, browse the wares of the Bath Christmas Market, have a cider or two from Honey’s Midford Cider, and then spend a night on the town. There are plenty of clubs, bars, and pubs open in the centre of Bath.

Things to do in Bath after you have been to the market

Bath On Ice

Bath on Ice

Bath on Ice, the infamous outdoor ice rink, is also returning to the city for its 15th year. Over 1000 square metres of rink are waiting for you and your friends, all you need is the opening hours and days below:

Monday to Friday: 10:45am to 10pm
Saturday and Sunday: 10:30am to 10pm
Not open Christmas Day

The ice rink prices vary, but an hour for an adult is just £11.50, while it’s £10 for an hour for a child. Skate aids are available at £5 per session, and the rink is open from November 15th, 2019 to January 5th, 2020. Located just five minutes away (on foot) from Milsom Street’s Bath Christmas Market chalets. You’ll find the rink, and some other attractions, in Royal Victoria Park.

Glow in the dark mini-golf

Right next to the ice rink, you’ll find some great glow-in-the-dark mini-golf, too! This brightly coloured game has fluorescent gold balls and a botanical course with 18 holes. Prices start from £6 for kids, and £7 for adults. Days and times below:

Everyday: 4pm to 9:30pm
Not open Christmas Day

Bath Glow Mini Golf

Just like the ice rink of Bath on Ice, the golf course is open until January 5th, 2020. To book, head over to the Bath on Ice website. Embrace the true winter wonderland of bath by starting with the Christmas Market and then heading straight over to Royal Victoria Park for more fun.

Stool Bath Christmas Market

Something different...

If you’re looking for something a little less Christmas-themed, try roaming the streets for some of the quirky and unique cafés and restaurants of Bath. Colonna & Small’s is just a stone’s throw away from Royal Victoria Park, and has been named as one of the best coffee shops in the UK.

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Bath’s Best Sunday Roasts – Our guide to the best Bath Roasts

Bath Sunday Roast
Bath Sunday Roast

Bath's Best Sunday Roasts - Our guide to the best Bath Sunday Roasts

If you’re looking for somewhere special to go with family and friends, feeling a bit fragile after a heavy night on the tiles or just want to have an easy day at the weekend, a Bath Sunday roast is always a winner.

A Bath Sunday roast is also the perfect activity if you are organising a Bath stag weekend or Bath hen weekend to perk everyone up before they  head home.

The Sunday roast is held in such high esteem and seems to be the one meal that people are very particular about so an average one just won’t cut it.

From debates of whose Nan makes the best Yorkshire puddings to the politics of accompaniments and how well done meat should be, everyone seems to have an opinion.

Why not take the pressure off and leave the work to some of Bath’s finest. With a range of different pubs and restaurants I think we might have something here for everyone, whether you like a traditional Bath roast with all the trimmings or are in the market for a more contemporary twist on your meat and three veg

Here is our guide to Bath's best Sunday roasts

Bath Sunday Dinners

The Chequers, 50 Rivers St, Bath BA1 2QA

The Chequers is no newcomer to the scene, with its proud history dating back to 1776.

As the 2015 and 2017 winner of the Bath Good Food Award for Sunday lunch, this cosy, welcoming restaurant has the perfect balance of fine dining and relaxed atmosphere.

With a gastropub and fine dining restaurant sourcing local seasonal produce and a good range local bevvies, The Chequers has it all. If sharing is your thing, they also do an amazing looking sharing roast for two.

Bath Best Roast Dinner

The King William, 36 Thomas Street Bath BA1 5NN

This grade 2 listed Georgian building, like The Chequers, has a relaxed pub downstairs and upstairs dining rooms for a more formal and intimate setting.

Seasonal and local food and drink make up the daily changing menu with a selection of real ales from small local microbreweries. Sounds like a perfect recipe for a Bath Sunday roast.

Bath Roast Dinner

Marlborough Tavern, 35 Marlborough Buildings, Bath BA1 2LY

Do you take the dog for a walk or relax in front of an open fire or in a sunny garden and enjoy a top class Sunday roast in Bath? Why not do both?

The Marlborough Tavern not only produces fine food but is dog and family friendly and being located near Victoria Park everyone is in for a great day.

The Pulteney Arms, 37 Daniel Street, Bath, BA2 6ND

Whether you’re in front of the log burner on a cold Winters day or sat in the courtyard in the Summer, The family run Pulteney Arms is in a beautiful setting and a great location to walk the Bath Skyline.

They are ale drinker friendly featuring in the CAMRA Good Beer Guide and are dog friendly too. Who sees the making of a perfect Sunday?!

Bath Best Roast

Victoria Pub and Kitchen, Upper Bristol Road, Bath, BA1 3AT

A pub with plenty of outdoor space for those sunny Sunday roasts in Bath but a bright, airy spacious inside area too for those colder days. The Victoria Pub as the name suggests overlooks Victoria Park for a bit of a post lunch wander.

GPT Smokehouse, 44-45 Lower Bristol Road, Bath, BA2 3BD

If you like your meat cooked low and slow at an award winning restaurant, check out the GPT Smokehouse.

With high quality locally sourced ingredients cooked over a hickory wood fire smoker these two brothers have been awarded the Bath Good Food Award Best Sunday Lunch 2014 and were highly commended in 2015.

Whatever floats your boat when it comes to a Bath Sunday roast, as long as you’re looking for high quality grub, these pubs and restaurants will not disappoint.

With great fresh, local produce being the order of the day, you can enjoy a top notch Sunday roast in Bath and explore what the city has to offer with family, friends and dogs too.

Rated 4.8/5 out of 420 reviews.

Bristol Street Art – Bristol street art graffiti scene guide

Bristol Street Art
Bristol Street Art

Bristol Street Art

Bristol is a modern, cosmopolitan city with a vibrant past. It’s a place where old-world charm harmoniously meets urbanism – a concoction that continues to lure people from all over the world.

As well as its historic past, part of what makes Bristol’s iconic landscape so familiar (and yet ever changing) is the street art.

Evident throughout the city, Bristol’s graffiti and street art scene is one of the largest in the UK.  It’s a mesmerising medley of colours, ideas, styles and cultures – a visual simile of the city itself.

If you want to experience the Bristol street art graffiti scene for yourself you can just take a walk, paint the town red (excuse the pun) and keep your eyes peeled.

But if you fancy something with a little more focus, there are several events and organisations that will help you find the best street art Bristol has to offer.

The Bristol Street Art Graffiti Scene

Street Art Bristol

Where the wall

Inspired by the lively Bristol street art scene, Where the wall offers a cultural, artistic experience for kids and adults alike.

The award-winning company provides street art tours throughout the city, one of which is the longest running in Bristol.

For two glorious hours, Where the wall will guide you through the city streets every Saturday and Sunday, to ogle at 30 years of fantastic and visually mesmerising Bristol street art, which you may have otherwise missed.

Their intimate knowledge of the graffiti – and the artists – steams from a passion of the art form, as well as their personal expertise (some members of the team have even grown up with Banksy).

Where the wall also offers unique team-building events (either at their HQ or at your chosen location), giving your team or party the chance to make their very own street art stencils, or work together to create a giant masterpiece.

It’s a great option for any stag do or hen weekend, who are looking for a completely unique activity for their stay in Bristol.

Bristol Art

Graft workshop

Another great activity option for Bristol stag and hen weekends is Graft. Their customised packages will undoubtedly get all of your party involved; start with a walking tour of the best Bristol street art before you get your hands dirty and give street art a whirl!

As well as pre-nuptial parties, Graft offer workshops for all ages, for all the budding Banksy’s out there!

Banksy Bristol

Banksy; Bristol’s father of street art

Recognised around the world as the master of street art, Banksy was born and bred on the streets of Bristol.  He wealds a spray can like no other, and has sold his works all over the world for thousands of pounds.

Banksy’s politically fuelled art appears across the city, where he’s chosen to bless his hometown with some of his most iconic Bristol street art pieces.

Take the Banksy tour through Bristol and keep your eyes peeled for much-loved work, such as the Well Hung lover, The Mild, Mild West and the Grim Reaper.

Banksy’s hidden identity undoubtedly adds to his allure, but his popularity and success is rooted in his unquestionable talent.

Street Art Bristol

Upfest

Upfest, Europe’s largest free street art and graffiti festival has called Bristol home for a number of years, and only gets more popular with the passing of time.

Celebrating its 10th anniversary in July, gifted graffiti artists from 50 countries will pile into the city to paint 60,000 square feet of surfaces for the Bristol street art weekend.

Spread over 50 locations south of the river, the event welcomes 50,000 visitors, who flock to the streets and enjoy live music, workshops, art sales and delicious street food.

From independent food and drink retailers, to hair graffiti, homemade produce and high quality clothing, the streets are filled stalls that offer something for everyone.

Many of the bars and pubs along Bristol’s North street in Bedminster take part in the festival-esque spirit, and welcome street artists to spruce up their walls inside and out with live spray painting (outside) and framed pictures donning the interiors.

Bottomless Brunches in Bristol – Bristol Boozy Bottomless Brunch Guide

Bottomless Brunches Bristol Hero
Bottomless Brunches Bristol Hero

Bottomless Brunches in Bristol

Bottomless brunches in Bristol have become quite the thing of late.  Our resident foodie Katie has been trying out some of the best.

You’ve had a great night out and even thought you prepped with a pint of water by your bed, you’re still feeling a little fuzzy headed.

You’ve got two options; spend the day catching some z’s and re-hydrating or hitting up a Bottomless Brunches in Bristol, for a good ol’ dose of hair of the dog.

If option two is more your thing you’ve come to the right place for a guide to some of Bristol’s finest bottomless brunches on offer.  If you’re looking for a post just about traditional English breakfast based Bristol brunch, you’ve come to the wrong place, this will give you a taste of, as you’d expect of Bristol, a wide range of different tasty treats.

Bottomless Brunches Bristol Brace Browns

Brace and Browns

The award-winning Brace and Browns doesn’t need any real introduction and neither does their bottomless brunch. Although the menu might have changed, the original bottomless brunch in Bristol is still made with locally sourced fresh ingredients and sounds irresistible!

A selection of tasters, a trip to the Bloody Mary station to make your own, followed by your choice of top notch sounding mains and sweet treats and of course, plenty of fizz for £32.50, what’s not to like.

Bottomless Brunches Bristol Pata Negra

Pata Negra

For a total change of pace and country, you can head over to Pata Negra once a month for a Spanish tapas style bottomless cava brunch, one of our favorite bottomless brunches in Bristol.

For £25 from 11.00 – 13.00 you can imagine yourself soaking up the sun in Barcelona as you have a leisurely couple of hours eating Spanish hams and tortilla all washed down with all the cava.

Bottomless Brunches Bristol Steam

Steam Bristol

Now it’s time to get on another plane, this time we’re heading to America. Well, actually we’re heading to Steam Bristol but with this California inspired bottomless brunches in Bristol with bottomless mimosas or prosecco for two hours, you’d be forgiven for forgetting where you really are.

Starting with a selection of pastries and muffins, followed by a main, including; steak and eggs, shakshuka and several delicious pancake-based options, for £28.50 you could have your ~Saturday brunch needs taken care of.

Just to complicate things a little further or to give you the opportunity for more good food and bottomless drinking (responsibly of course) Steam Bristol have a bottomless barbeque every Sunday through the Summer.

There are meat and veggie options, an unlimited salad bar and unlimited sangria, prosecco and cider for two hours and live music. Sounds like the perfect afternoon to us.

The Clifton Sausage

It’s the first Saturday of the month and you’re debating where to meet everyone to catch up on the shenanigans of the night before. If you’re looking for a classic bottomless brunches in Bristol done well and a few more glasses to take you back a few hours, The Clifton Sausage could be the place for you.

Full English, smoked haddock or eggs benedict are just some of the temptations on offer with unlimited prosecco, bucks fizz, and bloody marys at £19.95 per person for one and a half hours.

Bottomless Brunches Bristol Pieminister

Pieminister

Today’s the day to wake up to a morning glory or a munch brunch. Pieminister is the place to be with these brunch pie offerings, or if pie is not taking your fancy, do not fear as there is more than just pie to accompany your bottomless prosecco, bloody marys, mimosas and aperol spritz.  The bottomless brunch last for one and a half hours for £20 and is served every two weeks.

Prince Street Social

You’re going out with a group and not everyone is a fan of the fizz, what do you do?! Option 1, lose a few of the crew, option 2, check out Prince Street Social where unlimited Amstel is included in the bottomless brunch.

For £28 per person, every Saturday, Prince Street Social have pastries, fresh fruit and yoghurt, unlimited prosecco and Amstel and one item from their brunch menu, including; various shakshoukas on sourdough, buttermilk pancakes and all the eggs.

Harvey Nichols

If you’ve got some cash to flash and want to take your bottomless brunches in Bristol up a notch, Harvey Nichols might just be the place for you. There’s no prosecco here, champagne is the order of the day and with a menu scattered with chia seeds, monkfish scampi and avocado mousse, the food is definitely no greasy spoon offerings.

If you struggle to choose between smoked salmon and halloumi, you’ve come to the right place as you can have three dishes from the menu. Between 11 and 2 on a Sunday, the champagne will be flowing and can be yours for £65.

You might be in Bristol for a bottomless brunch but with this lot you can take yourself around the world. By the time you’ve made the most of the bottomless drinks there’s a fair chance you might not be quite sure where you are. Now you just need to work out a schedule so you can sample some of Bristol’s finest boozy offerings.

Bristol Harbourside – Things to see and do at Bristol Harbourside

Bristol Harbourside
Bristol Harbourside

Top 5 things to do at Bristol’s Harbourside

In recent years, Bristol harbourside has flourished as the up-and-coming place to be in the UK.

Surrounded by countryside and with great transport links to the capital, Bristol’s harbourside relaxed vibe has drawn people from all walks of life, bringing with them new appetites and expectations.

As such, Bristol harbourside can boast the same eclectic mix of facilities as any major thriving metropolis, but on a much more intimate scale.

As with many of the UK’s major cities, Bristol was founded by the river and as a result, there are a huge range of Bristol activities to enjoy by the water.

Here’s the top 5 things to do around Bristol’s beautiful Harbourside.

Bristol’s Harbourside

SUP Bristol

1) Cruise along the docks!

What better way to spend a few hours than cruising up and down the Bristol harbourside, enjoying the amazing sights Bristol has to offer from the water.

Whether you’re on a Bristol Stag Do, a Hen weekend or just visiting friends (there’s a wide range of Bristol group accommodation in close proximity) a cruise is a great option, with or without a bar on board!

You can enjoy the sights and sounds of Bristol’s Harbourside, or if you are feeling more adventurous, you can cruise up the river a bit towards Bee’s tea rooms.

SS Great Britian

2) SS Great Britain

Bristol harbourside’s number one attraction, the SS Great Britain is a spectacle not to be missed.

The brainchild of Bristol’s famous Isambard Kingdom Brunel, the ship was an imposing, colossal feat of maritime engineering. And it still is to this day. Visitors are invited to step aboard and step back in time, to experience life at sea, as it would have been on her maiden voyage in 1843.

Bristol Harbour Festival

3) Bristol Harbour Festival

Live bands, delicious street food and fun for all the family, the Bristol Harbour Festival is a must for any festival lover.

For three glorious days in July, the festival takes over the Harbour area of the city, drawing crowds from across the region. There’s something for everyone – from maritime activities to Morris dancing, music and even a circus zone.

And the best part? It’s free – but make sure you bring a few notes, as the food and drink can prove irresistible

Bristol We The Curious

4) We the Curious

Experience science like never before! We The Curious offers a hands-on approach to science education – whatever their age.

There are hundreds of exciting exhibits to explore and experiments to take part in.

And the permanent 3D planetarium gives visitors the chance to enjoy the night sky and learn more about space – it’s quite literally out of this world!

5) Pirate walk

Step back in time and experience some Bristol’s lively (and sometimes harrowing) maritime history.

The perfect activity for pirate-loving land lubbers, the famous Pirate Walk is a great way to learn more about the city – and some of it’s world famous inhabitants.

The tour takes you around the Harbourside and lasts an hour. Wannabe buccaneers are welcome to don an eye patch or bandana and get involved.

still standing in the evening should wobble their way over to Thekla – the award-winning live music boat.

Bristol’s Best Sunday Roasts

Sunday Dinners Bristol
Sunday Dinners Bristol

Bristol Best Sunday Roast Guide

It’s hard to beat the iconic Sunday roast while away your Stag or Hen weekend. You’re feeling a little fragile after a big night on the Saturday, you want to catch up with friends or family, you need refuelling after a hearty walk in the countryside, what’s the answer? It’s always going to be a Sunday roast and Sunday roasts in Bristol are some of the best.

When you’re up against everyone’s mum’s who make the best roast ever or Auntie Mavis who’s roast tatties are legendary, it can be a hard act to follow but we think the Bristol Good Food Awards 2018 shortlist has got some great contenders. Voted for by the people of Bristol and judged by food experts, the awards ceremony is at the end of February.

Time to get sampling what the nominees have to offer so you can find your award winner too. If you’re not local to Bristol we’ve got you covered too as there’s Somerset cottage accommodation for you to make a break of it and sample Sunday roasts in Bristol.

Best Sunday Roast in Bristol

Roast Dinner Bristol

The Bank Tavern, 8 John Street, Bristol, BS1 2HR

So for the ultimate Bristol Sunday roast let’s start with the highly commended in 2015, The Bank Tavern.

An unassuming traditional pub tucked away in the city centre serving traditional and more contemporary dishes and most importantly, an amazing roast. All you need to go with it is some award winning ales and cider and yes, you’ve got it, they can provide that too.

Broken Dock, Millennium Promenade, Bristol, BS1 5SY

Broken Dock is a relative newcomer to the Bristol Sunday roast scene as they reopened in May 2017 with new everything; new name, staff and menus. If you’re going to open a restaurant, bagging a Bristol Good Food nomination within your first year is a great way to do it.

Sunday Roast Bristol

Browns, 38 Queens Road, Clifton, Bristol, BS8 1RE

Browns definitely have the first impressions covered. You can’t help but appreciate the sense of grandeur as you walk up the steps towards the building which was modelled on the Doge’s Palace in Venice.

As you might imagine, the inside of the building doesn’t disappoint wither and is a stunning location to enjoy your Bristol Sunday roast.

Roast Bristol

Cowshed, 44-46 Whiteladies Road, Clifton, Bristol, BS8 2NH

Although Cowshed is renowned for meat, their focus is fresh, locally sourced, seasonal produce. With big tables, this would be an ideal place to go with a group of friends or family for a Sunday roast in Bristol. They were highly commended for their Sunday roast in 2012

Nettle & Rye, 16 Kings Road, Bristol, BS8 4AB

If you find yourself in Clifton on a Sunday lunchtime, Nettle and Rye might be the place for you. With a sun trap outsides and a relaxed feel inside, maybe it’s time to take advice from the Bristol Good Food Award and visit this 2016 highly commended eatery.

Rose of Denmark, 6 Dowry Place, Bristol, BS8 4QL

For a traditional roast of good portions, The Rose of Denmark is a great shout. Being close to the harbourside, you’re in the right place to go for a walk after your Sunday roast. No stranger to the Bristol Good Food award best Sunday lunch, The Rose of Denmark was highly commended in 2013 and 2014.

Victoria Park, 66 Raymend Rd, Bristol BS3 4QW ·

A local gastropub which, as the name suggests, is just off of Victoria Park, won the award for the Best Sunday Roast in 2013. With great views from the garden where you can enjoy your award winning roast, bring on the spring.

Yert Lush Bristol

Yurt Lush, Clock Tower Yard, Temple Meads, BS1 6QH

I bet you’ve been thinking that the list feels incomplete, like I’ve forgotten a classic major category in the Bristol Sunday roast eateries. We’ve covered restaurants and pubs but that’s it, no mention of Mongolian yurts, well here it is.

Nestled in next to Temple Meads, Yurt Lush has the wow factor and is a great place if you are looking for something a bit different to impress people. It definitely isn’t just a place to go for the novelty factor as the fresh flavours and sustainably sourced ingredients speak for themselves, so does the Bristol Good Food Award for the best Sunday roast for 2016.

Bristol is at the forefront of exquisite cuisine and as these nominees demonstrate, there is great variety and something for everyone, everyone who appreciates amazing Sunday roasts in Bristol that is.

Whether you live in Bristol or are visiting for the weekend, these contenders for the Bristol Good Food Award for the best Sunday roast are well spread around the city so there’s no excuse to not see what they have to offer. If so much talk of Sunday roasts in Bristol has piqued your interest but you’re not lucky enough to live in the area, why not book a weekend with friends at Bristol group accommodation and get sampling.

Bristols best nightclubs & nightlife

Bristol Nightclubs Nightlife
Bristol Nightclubs Nightlife

Best Bristol nightclubs & nightlife guide

Bristol has got a strong list of nightclubs that cater for stag or hen dos, so it makes for a great location for your big send-off.  This guide covers a lot of bases with options for a wide variety of tastes, ranging from 80s classics and indie club nights to DJ dance floor fillers and themed entertainment.

You can also find out more about our Bristol stag weekend and Bristol hen weekend activities & packages to add in some fun activities to all of the excitement.

Top 10 nightclubs in Bristol:

Bristol Nightclubs Nightlife

Thekla

The Thekla has been a big part of Bristol’s busy nightlife for years and it’s well worth stopping in on, even if you’re planning on finishing up the night somewhere else.

It features a lot of live music and throws indie club nights into the mix, but it’s not everyday you get to party on a boat, so it might be one to add to the tour plan. It’s moored up on The Grove to the south of Queen Square.

Popworld

Popworld is a popular 80s themed nightclub, which has dedicated itself to creating a party atmosphere. The emphasis is on fun and the dance floor is pretty busy. You can also book a table or booth for your group, so you’ve got a base for the night. It’s located on Baldwin St to the North of Queen Square.

Lola Lo

This Polynesian-styled Bristol nightclub has got as much tongue-in-cheek as it does monkey nuts on its counter. It doesn’t take itself too seriously, but it does throw in the occasional DJ set to keep the place jumping.

It’s got a long bamboo bar, where you can top up on cocktails, lots of tables and booths and some of the most exotic drinks you’re likely to find in Bristol. It’s located on Queens Rd, just around the corner from Berkely Square.

Bristol Nightclubs Nightlife

Prysm

This huge Bristol nightclub boasts seven themed rooms, so it should have something for everyone and a whole lot to explore. There are five bars in total, so plenty of options to fill your glasses.

It’s got a wide range of drinks, including a big cocktail menu, making this a strong contender for either a stag do or hen party. It’s located in The South Buildings on Canon’s Rd.

La Rocca

La Rocca is a three-room nightclub that bills itself as a party venue. It plays classic tracks and chart tunes on its checkerboard dance floor, which gets pretty lively by the end of the night. It’s a no-nonsense nightclub with shots at the ready, and more flashing lights than Blackpool at Christmas. You’ll find it on Triangle South, around the back of Lola Lo.

Walkabout

Walkabout is always a good option for stags and hens with its relaxed Antipodean approach to nightlife. It’s got classic themed party nights with Feelgood Fridays and Walkabout Saturdays, huge bars and plenty of dancefloor space. You can find it on Corn St, north of Popworld.

Bristol Nightclubs Nightlife

Luna

Luna is a little way out of town, located in Clifton, so if you’re looking for Bristol nightclub away from the main hubbub then it could be one to put on your weekend list. It prides itself on its cocktail menu and hosts a Pop night on Saturdays.

You can find it on Richmond Terrace, off Queens Rd. Sadly, it’s scheduled to close its doors for the last time on New Year’s Eve 2017, so enjoy it while it lasts.

Kobe Karaoke

OK, so the name gives this away, but it’s hard not to include Kobe Karaoke in the list of nightclubs for a stag do or hen party in Bristol, even if its technically a karaoke bar. It’s a whole lot of fun, whether it’s for a group of big singing guys or girls that just want to have fun. It’s on Nelson St, not too far from Bierkeller if you’re looking to combine Oompah and Karaoke on the same night.

Bierkeller

Two-pint steins, Oompah Bands and a rock and roll spirit makes Bierkeller about as close as it gets to an Oktoberfest stag do in Bristol. It also has a fair few live bands and with a 750-person capacity, it’s got a lot of room to move around in.  It’s located on All Saints’ St, next to Castle Park.

Bristol Nightclubs Nightlife

Basement 45

Finally, getting into more serious waters, there’s Basement 45, which mixes a variety of music with guest and resident DJs. It’s got three dance floors and three bars, all underneath its arched basement ceiling. You can check it out on Frogmore St, next door to Soda bar.

The Ultimate Guide to Organising a Hen Weekend

Hen Guide
Hen Guide

The Ultimate Guide to Organising a Hen Weekend

When your best friend calls you, you already have a feeling what she’s going to tell you. After discussing details of romantic proposals, talk turns to the hen do. She doesn’t even need to ask you to be her chief bridesmaid, you’ve both always known the line-up.

Here’s the ultimate guide to making sure that you do your friend proud with an unforgettable weekend of fun and bonding.

The lady of the moment

The most important place to start is to arrange a time with the hen to go through details. Although it is great to have a surprise weekend, you want to make sure that it’s a surprise weekend that she’s going to love.

What is the most important part of the hen do for her? Is it to make sure she has as many of her family and friends there to celebrate or to go abroad for a week long holiday for some pre-wedding sunshine?

You won’t want to have an itinerary from her but you need to know the style of weekend that she will enjoy, there’s no point booking a spa and cheer leading class type weekend if she is more of an outdoor events kind of a girl. It’s also important to make sure that her friends have similar tastes to her before you book anything as it only takes a couple of unhappy people to bring down the mood of the weekend.

Getting the details of the other bridesmaids at the start gives you a good opportunity to get to know her other close friends and to pool ideas so you have the perfect weekend for your bestie.

Hen Party

Party goer list

The hen’s availability is obviously crucial but you want to have a range of dates so as many of her nearest and dearest can be there too. You’ll need to make sure that she gives you a full list of email addresses and phone numbers of the people she wants to invite.

If there are some key people it’s a good idea to contact them first to check that they will definitely be there and have a secondary list of people who are given less choice of the date as it might be difficult to find one that is perfect for everyone.

Hen Weekend

Getting in the numbers

Weddings can get expensive for everyone, not just the happy couple. As the chief organiser the responsibility of getting as many people as possible to turn up to the hen weekend lies with you, no pressure! It’s worth considering the stage of life of the hen do attendees before you start planning luxury escapes if it’s going to exclude half of the guest list. The same goes for the destination, if that’s going to be a deal breaker for people maybe a venue not too far from home would tick all the boxes.

The chances are the most important aspect for the hen will be having all of her friends together for a good ol’ knees up so the more the merrier.

If you can secure a list of definite people or who will be at each part of the weekend if dipping in and out is an option, it will make the planning far easier. Having a budget planned at the start helps keep things under control and allows people to decide their limitations before committing and they might be less likely to drop out.

If you plan activities or book accommodation for a certain number and people do drop out it might be left to the other people share out the extra cost.

Accommodation

As a base for your hen weekend this needs careful consideration, you need to think about the type of weekend that you have planned.

Are you going to book a city break or an activity packed weekend with the accommodation just being used as a place to stumble back to in the early hours and sleep off a hangover before dragging yourselves back out for more action? If this is the case, maybe a hotel would be the best option. If you are you going to be looking for a place which is a feature of the hen weekend or a pad to relax and spend time together, a big house, camping or glamping might be better suited to you.

Just keep thinking back to the hen and the other types of people who will be partying with you for the weekend. If most of party goers are going to be city birds who baulk at the idea of getting mud on their pristine white stilettos, a weekend of camping and quad biking might not be the right approach.

Hen Ideas

Activities

A good hen weekend needs a fun activity in the day time. It’s a great time for everyone to get to know each other and gives the weekend some structure. There are so many different options that its worth exploring alternative ideas before going straight for the obvious activities that everyone has done before, you don’t want 12 cocktail making experts by the end of the weekend. Likewise, horse riding across Dartmoor followed by camping might not be the right activity if Great Aunt Maud is a key player.

Try to keep within the guidelines given by the hen as it is her hen weekend and it is all about making it as fun as possible for her, not planning your own ultimate weekend. Chatting to the bridesmaids throughout is a great way to rein it in and keep on track with your best buddy in mind.

Packages

If life is busy or you just like the idea of someone sorting it all out for you, you could always look to the experts and get West Country Weekends on board. Not only do you have experienced help and keep it simple but often you end up getting more for your money than booking everything individually. Additional benefits include:

  • Allocation on hotels meaning instant confirmation upon booking
  • VIP nightclub entry
  • VIP Casino entry
  • Private dining
  • Restaurants suitable to groups
  • Local knowledge of an area you might not know
  • Additional activities – add on a second activity you may not have thought of yourself
  • Only a £50 deposit to pay initially
  • Individual payment system – this means that you don’t need to collect money from the group, they just pay their share directly saving you all that annoying chasing
Hen do

And lift off

You’ve done it, you’ve booked the ultimate hen weekend that will just serve to remind your friend of how close you are and that you possibly know her even better than she knows herself.

Sending an email to everyone before the weekend with the finer details such as timings, specific clothing for activities, fancy dress, how much cash people will need if its rural break for taxis etc will mean you have less questions to field and people will be more prepared. The hen will also need enough details to bring the right stuff and feel comfortable and you will need to bear in mind any spare clothes for her if it’s a messy activity and you don’t want to spoil the surprise.

Plan the finer details such as taxis and food arrangements so people aren’t hanging around and looking to you all weekend to make decisions, you want to be busy having fun and not having to arrange anything as you go.

Success List:

  • Always think back to the hen and other people going to the hen weekend
  • Know who are the most important people when arranging dates
  • Consider budgets and logistics when you decide on the destination
  • Get people to commit before securing bookings for accommodation and activities
  • Do as much booking as you can before the big weekend, people like to know that it’s all under control and when you’re away you’ll just have to worry about where the next tray of Jager bombs are coming from
  • Have her back – make yourself the responsible person for getting your friend home at the end of the night , put a pint of water by the bed and have hangover snacks ready for the morning after recovery.
  • Have fun

Bristol’s best Pubs

bristol pubs
bristol pubs

The best pubs in Bristol

Who doesn’t like a traditional pub? They’re part of British culture – so much so, they’re now woven into the fabric of daily life (and have been for hundreds of years). In fact, it was the Roman invasion that brought the concept of the public house to our shores.

It might have taken a while (say, a few centuries) for the pub as we know it to come to fruition, but in that time, they’ve become so much more than simply a house serving ale. Throughout time, they’ve served as places of business, social reform, diversion and in the absence of the printing press, even as the local news.

Luckily for Bristolians, the city isn’t short on traditional Bristol pubs, many of which also serve delicious food and fabulous ales. Here are just a few of Bristol’s first and foremost pubs.

bristol pubs

Bristol’s oldest pubs

There’s some debate over the title for oldest pub in the city, with several contenders vying for first place.

The Hatchet Inn claims to have been established around 1606, and is named after the woodsmen of Clifton Wood. It’s stood the test of time, and now offers a range of delicious pub grub, as well as a tasty pint.

Another contender for the title is the Llandoger Trow, built in 1664. With its stunning Tudor exterior set on the sunny cobbled street in the heart of the city, it’s a great option for those warm, summer days. The Bristol pub is also steeped in history; legend has it that the Llandoger Trow was a favorite drinking spot for the infamous privateer Blackbeard, as well as the inspiration for Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island.

A third contender for the title is The Rummer, just off of St Nick’s Market. Dating back to 1241, The Rummer’s flagstone floors and huge fireplace act as visible reminders of the pub’s longstanding history. It now boasts its own micro distillery, brewing batches of aromatic gins and spiced rums that you can sample in the bar (along with a plethora of other spirits).

bristol pubs

The Steam Crane

This Bristol Pub is located south of the river in Bedminster, The Steam Crane is pretty hard to miss. Its elaborately painted exterior depicts an olden day nautical scene, while the interior décor aligns to a more traditional pub theme, with sprinkling of modernism.

Leather armchairs somehow blend seamlessly with the traditional fireplaces and wooden bar that you’d expect from a traditional British pub. There’s a wide variety of beer, ales and wine available, and the food comes highly recommended by locals and visitors alike.

It’s great for larger groups, so if you’re planning a Bristol stag weekend, then the Stream Crane is a great place to start your celebrations.

bristol pubs

The Albion, Clifton

A rather swish take on the tradition British pub, the Albion is a very popular haunt in the heart of bustling Clifton village. Dating back to the 17th Century, the building has been expertly renovated and designed with impeccable taste.

It’s a winner for all seasons; lazy summer afternoons fly by in the ample courtyard garden, while winter Sunday lunches have to be experienced by the comfort of a roaring fire and accompanied by a delicious glass of red.

Although it might not be one for the budget conscious, The Albion is certainly a must for those who want to enjoy their pint in more upmarket surroundings. The food menu is seasonal, the ingredients impeccable quality and the dishes, reassuringly traditional. There’s literally something for everyone, one of our favourite Bristol pubs.

bristol pubs

The Jersey Lily

As far as Bristol pubs go, The Jersey Lily is young, fun and full of character. Situated on lively Whiteladies Road, the pub enjoys a relaxed atmosphere, which attracts a mixed – yet equally welcome – crowd. The food is award-winning; sourced from local suppliers, you can sink your teeth into a huge variety of scrumptious snacks and dinners.

From tapas to share to Sunday Roasts, there’s literally something for everyone on their extensive menu. If you’re more interested in the drinks menu, then you won’t be disappointed.

There’s a huge selection of wines for all tastes on offer – as well as cocktails. And if live music is up your street, make sure you check out the live acoustic on Thursdays, while you and a friend sip on two delicious craft cocktails, for the price of one.

bristol pubs

Amoeba, Clifton

If you’re a cocktail connoisseur, then you’ve found mecca. Nestled on a quiet Clifton street, Amoeba’s bright red exterior and candle-lit window makes it stand out on dark, winter nights.

Once you’re inside and had a chance to peruse the extensive cocktail menu, it’ll start standing out for a host of other reasons. Perhaps it’s the exotic collection of mixes, spirits and drinks on offer, or the expertise in which the staff guide you through the menu. Or it could simply be the incredible flavours of the ingenious concoctions, or relaxed and friendly atmosphere.

The venue also offers free event hire – a great choice for Bristol hen weekends who want to be based in and around Clifton village.

Private Dining Bristol – Bristol’s best private dining restaurants

Private Dining Bristol
Private Dining Bristol

Best Bristol private dining restaurants

So, you’ve got your night out sorted and your daytime activities down to a tee but now you need think about food. There’s plenty of choices when it comes to dining out but when you’re planning a Bristol hen weekend to remember, a standard dinner reservation isn’t going to live up to the rest of your plans.   To help you find something special, we’ve rounded up some of the best private dining experiences in and around the city.

Private Dining Bristol

Racks, Clifton

The ever-popular Racks is often touted as ‘Bristol’s best party destination’ and there’s plenty of reasons why. It could be the free venue hire, the bar stacked with some of the best gins in England or the mouth-watering menus. We think that it’s a combination of all three.   Racks can cater for up to 200 people although the venue is split into a variety of spaces, each with its own character and original features. Fancy trying some of those fine gins? Make the evening extra special and take part in one of their tasting masterclasses. Gin not your tipple of choice? They offer an ale tasting session too. Either can be booked as part of a private dining package or separately.

Private Dining Bristol

No.4 Clifton Village, Clifton

No.4 is set in the heart of Clifton Village and we guarantee the bride-to-be will love this stylish dining destination. It’s the perfect venue for a sophisticated evening soiree. With two fantastic rooms available, the venue is ideal for hosting either smaller, intimate parties or larger groups and if you’re planning a summer hen weekend, their idyllic gardens are perfect for dining al fresco.   They’ll also serve you the best Pimm’s you’ve ever had (take our word for it). Their menus will leave you spoilt for choice and, with a team dedicated to helping you plan your party, what you’re going to eat is the only choice you’ll have to worry about.

Private Dining Bristol

Hotel du Vin & Bistro, City Centre

If you’re looking for nothing short of luxury when it comes to private dining then Hotel du Vin should be top of your list. With a variety of rooms available to hire, they each exude a unique sense of charm and character. This venue has an extra special treat in store for smaller parties too at the Sommelier’s table.   Start your evening with champagne and canapés upon your arrival before being treated to a sumptuous five course menu with wines matched to each. There’s even an expert to talk you through each one. It’s not just dinner, it’s a truly is a unique dining experience and an evening you’ll never forget.

Private Dining Bristol

The Albion, Clifton Village

In the heart of the village lies The Albion, a historic venue that first opened its doors in the 19th century and has become a firm favourite. It’s a perfect blend of classic and contemporary and the menu, as well as the venue itself, pays homage to its history with a nod to the new.   The private dining room on the first floor can host up to 30 people and the menu has something that everyone will love. From the freshest fish, the finest cuts of meat to desserts that are to die for, The Albion is guaranteed to provide you with good food, good wine and a good time.

Private Dining Bristol
The Jetty, Corn Street, City Centre

With architecture to leave you awestruck and a lively yet relaxed atmosphere that makes everyone feel at home, The Jetty will leave any bride-to-be feeling like a princess. The multi-award-winning restaurant boasts a Sansovino inspired banking hall for those looking to host large parties (it seats up to 300) as well as several more modestly sized dining rooms for occasions that are a little more low-key but just as special.   Before the day, the restaurant team will work with you to create a bespoke menu which will be complimented by their selection of fine wines and eclectic cocktail list. All you’ll need to do is sit back, relax and have the time of your lives.

Book ahead

We know that dinner can be a bit of an afterthought when you’ve already put together an exciting itinerary but it’s definitely something that you need to plan. Why not use it as an excuse to plan something special for the bride-to-be?   Private dining can be a formal affair or a casual gathering.   Either way, it’ll turn an unforgettable weekend into an extra special occasion. After all, you are celebrating.